|Publication number||US5402451 A|
|Application number||US 08/003,901|
|Publication date||Mar 28, 1995|
|Filing date||Jan 11, 1993|
|Priority date||Jan 11, 1993|
|Publication number||003901, 08003901, US 5402451 A, US 5402451A, US-A-5402451, US5402451 A, US5402451A|
|Inventors||John D. Kaewell, Jr., David M. Cooley, Youngky Kim|
|Original Assignee||Hughes Aircraft Company|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (1), Referenced by (35), Classifications (13), Legal Events (6)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
1. Field of the Invention
The present invention generally relates to spatial diversity radio receiving systems and, more particularly, to a Digital Post-Detection FM spatial diversity combination circuit for fading channels typical of cellular radio operating environments.
2. Description of the Prior Art
Antenna diversity, also known as spatial diversity, is a useful technique for combating Rayleigh fading. The instantaneous fading characteristics seen by two or more receivers operating off of physically separated receive antennas will be different. If the antennas are separated by an appropriate distance, the fading characteristics which will be seen by the two receivers will be largely uncorrelated. This means that it is highly likely that the signal quality of one of the receivers will be better than the signal quality of the other receiver at any given time. By adaptively using the output from the receiver with the better signal quality, the overall output signal to noise ratio (SNR) can be improved.
The key to effectively implementing diversity combining is determining which receiver has the better signal quality. In the past, fixed analog combining techniques were used. These analog combining methods would be optimized for certain operating environments such as either a thermal noise limited environment or a carrier to interference limited environment. A problem with the analog approach is that the analog cellular channel is very dynamic and its properties can change from one type of environment to another. This digital FM spatial combining technique can adapt to accommodate the environment. Analog based diversity combining systems are typically designed as either a maximal ratio combiner, equal gain combiner or a switching combiner.
It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a digital combiner that can operate in a "hybrid" mode which can combine the best features of the individual analog combining methods.
By use of digital signal processing, highly effective combination decisions can be made which would be very difficult or nearly impossible with traditional analog signal processing. Also, with digital signal processing the best set of diversity combining "weights" can be determined for a particular operating environment. In the past, diversity combination was implemented with analog circuitry. The diversity gain which was achievable in a laboratory was very difficult to achieve in production. Consistency between laboratory-prototype equipment performance and production equipment is easily attained with digital signal processing circuitry.
A feature of this system is its flexibility. The system can be configured to use signal quality information in a manner which is appropriate for a given radio environment. Also, the weighting information can be derived from various sources and then processed to accommodate various situations. This spatial combiner has the ability to perform as a "hybrid" combiner. For example this circuit can combine signals from various receivers based on soft weighting information, as in a maximal ratio combiner, or on hard weighting information, as in a switching combiner.
The foregoing and other objects, aspects and advantages will be better understood from the following detailed description of a preferred embodiment of the invention with reference to the drawings, in which:
FIG. 1 is block diagram of two receivers and their outputs which are used by the digital FM spatial diversity combiner according to the invention;
FIG. 2 is a block diagram of the basic digital FM post-detection spatial combiner according to the invention;
FIG. 3 is a block diagram of a first modification of the basic digital FM post-detection spatial combiner shown in FIG. 2;
FIG. 4 is a block diagram of a second modification of the basic digital FM post-detection spatial combiner shown in FIG. 2;
FIG. 5 is a block diagram of a third modification of the basic digital FM post-detection spatial combiner shown in FIG. 2; and
FIG. 6 is a block diagram of a fourth modification of the basic digital FM post-detection spatial combiner shown in FIG. 2.
Referring now to the drawings, and more particularly to FIG. 1, there is shown a block diagram of the receivers 11 and 12 connected to respective antennas 13 and 14. The antennas 13 and 14 are spaced a distance which is determined by the frequency of the channel. For example, at 6 GHz, the spacing is about nine feet. The receivers 11 and 12 each provide as outputs digitized discriminator samples and digitized Received Signal Strength Indicator (RSSI) samples which are used by the digital FM spatial diversity combiner according to the invention. The receivers include the analog-to-digital (A/D) conversion circuitry necessary to deliver the digitized RSSI samples and the digitized discriminator samples to the Digital Signal Processor (DSP) which implements the spatial combination.
The basic digital FM post-detection spatial combiner is shown in FIG. 2. In this system the unsigned logarithmic RSSI samples are normalized. This accomplished by averaging the RSSI samples from receivers 11 and 12 in averager circuit 21 and then using this average as the divisor in dividers 22 and 23 which respectively receive the RSSI samples from receivers 11 and 12 as their dividend inputs. The normalized RSSI samples are applied to respective multipliers 24 and 25 to weight the respective discriminator samples from receivers 11 and 12 before the discriminator samples are combined in summer 26. This type of combination is known as a post-detection, maximal ratio combiner. The normalization of the RSSI information is a feature which would be difficult to attain in an analog system. The normalization of the RSSI information before combining keeps the combined output at a desirable amplitude.
A first modification of the basic digital post-detection spatial combiner is shown in FIG. 3. In this modification, the actual discriminator samples are analyzed to try and determine if the SNR of the signal into the discriminator has gone below the quieting threshold of the FM discriminator. When the input SNR to the discriminator drops below the quieting threshold, there is a large decrease in the discriminator's output SNR. This condition is detectable by monitoring the "click" energy or high frequency energy which greatly increases when the input SNR drops below the quieting threshold. To detect the "click" energy, the discriminator samples from receivers 11 and 12 are high pass filtered in respective filters 31 and 32. The high pass filter cutoff frequency is chosen to be above the voice and signalling tone frequencies. There are various options on how to use the high pass filter output. The high pass filter output can be further processed to provide a "soft" weighting to the discriminator samples before they are combined as shown in FIG. 3. The high pass filter outputs are squared and inverted in inverse squarers 33 and 34 to give a power representation of the high frequency energy present in the received signal. The inverse of the power calculation is then used to weight the respective discriminator samples in multipliers 35 and 36.
A second modification is to make a threshold decision on the energy level out of the high pass filter. This spatial combiner configuration is shown in FIG. 4. The outputs of the high pass filters 31 and 32 are squared in respective squarers 41 and 42, and the squared outputs are compared in comparators 43 and 44 with a threshold. The comparators control respective switches 45 and 46. If the energy level was high, the respective discriminator samples are not allowed to pass to the summer 26. If the energy level was low the discriminator samples are allowed to pass to the summer 26.
When the situation exists that one receiver's output is better than the other receiver's output, it is desirable to weight more heavily the good receiver's output. A simple means to achieve this is to square the RSSI samples from the receivers as shown in FIG. 5. More specifically, the RSSI samples from receivers 11 and 12 are squared in respective squarers 51 and 52, and the squared outputs are normalized. The squared RSSI samples are used to weight the respective discriminator samples. This exponentiation process can be carried to higher orders to increase the distance between the good channel's weighting versus the bad channel's weighting. As higher orders of exponentiation are used the closer the combiner's performance comes to that of a switching combiner.
FIG. 6 shows a modification useful in a thermal noise limited environment. The RSSI samples from receivers 11 and 12 are supplied to respective comparators 61 and 62 which control switches 63 and 64. The RSSI threshold can be set based on the known operating characteristics of the receivers. If the received signal level is at a level below the RSSI threshold, the discriminator samples from that receiver would not be used. The threshold would be set at a level slightly above the quieting threshold of the discriminator. When the signal level is above the RSSI threshold, the normal RSSI weighted discriminator combination would be performed.
In a Carrier to Interference (C/I) environment typical of an urban cellular system, the RSSI readings can be high despite a poor C/I. In this situation, the spatial diversity system can make a better decision base the "click" energy which greatly increases in poor C/Is. For this situation, the diversity systems shown in FIGS. 3 and 5 are more appropriate. Since the RSSI readings are not very useful, they would be switched out of the system, and the diversity decisions will rely solely on the high pass filter output energies.
While the invention has been described in terms of a single preferred embodiment, those skilled in the art will recognize that the invention can be practiced with modification within the spirit and scope of the appended claims.
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|U.S. Classification||375/347, 455/137, 455/135, 455/134|
|International Classification||H04B7/08, H04B17/00|
|Cooperative Classification||H04B7/0871, H04B7/0848, H04B17/318, H04B7/0885|
|European Classification||H04B7/08H1, H04B7/08C4J, H04B7/08P1|
|Jan 11, 1993||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: HUGHES AIRCRAFT COMPANY, CALIFORNIA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNORS:KAEWELL, JOHN D. JR.;COOLEY, DAVID M.;KIM, YOUNGKY;REEL/FRAME:006395/0444;SIGNING DATES FROM 19921221 TO 19921222
|Apr 30, 1998||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: HUGHES ELECTRONICS CORPORATION, CALIFORNIA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:HE HOLDINGS INC., HUGHES ELECTRONICS, FORMERLY KNOWN AS HUGHES AIRCRAFT COMPANY;REEL/FRAME:009123/0473
Effective date: 19971216
|Sep 21, 1998||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Sep 27, 2002||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8
|Oct 16, 2002||REMI||Maintenance fee reminder mailed|
|Sep 28, 2006||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 12